tv [untitled] October 2, 2012 3:30am-4:00am PDT
that was introduced a couple months ago. * so, i just wanted to highlight those differences. we changed some definitions to make it more consistent with federal policy, which i think was a highly desired change that was suggested by the housing authority. and, so, we were able to make those amendments. in addition to that, we removed the relocation appeals board as the appeals body. so, if there are any relocation claim peels, instead they would be heard by the rent board, which is more equipped and has the capacity to hear hearings of this type. and in addition to that there was a request to limit the scope of this ordinance to apply only to [speaker not understood]. instead, what we have done is limit the scope of this instead of limiting it to [speaker not understood] sites, the projects which trigger the act which is
federal legislation that requires certain noticing requirements for any projects that are using federal dollars. and, so, really the intent behind this ordinance is to ensure that families that are displaced because of a redevelopment action will have the express opportunity to return to the site so that they're not permanently displaced and have to move outside of the development. in hopes of maintaining a positive sense of community and helping people be able to return to their sites, we are hoping that you are supportive of this ordinance and i can answer any questions if you have any for me. thank you. >> thank you. is there any additional staff comment? >> i believe they're just here for questions if you have them. >> okay, great. so, we'll go to public comment. calling a couple of names. patricia thomas, madelein
howard, sarah short, sister stephanie, and sharon hewett. good afternoon, commissioners. my name is patricia thomas and i have been a resident of the [speaker not understood] for 15 years. i'm also a board member of the [speaker not understood] resident improvement association. it is an organization by residents, development in san francisco chinatown. we have 1300 households living in the development and they are mostly limited income, limited english speaking and seniors. for most of us it took us a long time to get in public housing. once we were there we put down roots.
this became our home. not just a unit in the building. and the people around us become our family. to be displaced for a revitalization project means leaving our home and family. this is very frightening, especially when there is no ordinance to protect our right of return. >> can you take it outside, please? once the development work is completed, to further protect us we should not have to go through additional screening in order to return. the housing authority has already checked and approved our eligibility. it is also not cost efficient to [speaker not understood], not to mention the extra burden it puts on us. that is why myself and i'm sure many others are in support of the right to return proposed ordinance.
we need to know that after being displaced by public housing revitalization project, we have the right of return to enjoy the newly renovated facilities once the work is completed. we truly hope that you agree. thank you. >> thank you. next speaker, please. hi, my name is sister stephanie, and i am a resident of public housing and i am in support of the right to remain or stay or come back or return or whatever it is. the current residents in public housing -- i want to support the right to come back because during the redevelopment process a lot of us, a lot of
our people who are in low-income housing get displaced for various reasons, okay. and this would just be such a hardship to children, to our seniors, to our young mothers who are just at the tip of learning how to be parents, to other children. we've been doing a lot of work in our communities to help our families to understand the processes and get their credit checks and credit repaired and restored and all of these things. and we're just afraid that if this ordinance -- if this is not put into place to safeguard our families, so many of us will be lost. there will be generations lost in the shuffle of a real gentrification within san francisco. and i'm in support of it
because we need to have some assurance that our families will be able to come back if so they choose to come back. they should be able to come back. some may not want to come back. but the ones that want to come back, they should be able to choose because, remember, they're not giving up their housing. the place is being redeveloped. and if it's being redeveloped, then they should be redeveloped for the individual that is currently living in the place because we fought so much to get the housing to be fixed up for the residents that were living in housing that was not sufficient enough for humans to live there. and it would just be inappropriate for all to not make sure that the same residents and the same reason, the same purpose that we have engaged in the redevelopment process to begin with, that the same folks would not benefit from that. you know, from that standing, from that reason that we're
here. so, i'm in support of it and i hope we all are in support of that today. thank you so very much for your time. good afternoon, commissioners. my name is madelein howard. i'm a staff attorney with bay area legal aid. we represent low-income tenants. we partner with housing rights committee and sarah short to help ensure that subsidized housing tenants can stay in their homes. so, we are here to support this amendment and you've heard already very powerfully from several tenants about how important this is. and i certainly cannot say it better than they can. i just wanted to highlight a couple of issues. the public housing stock, as you probably know, continues to deteriorate. and at the same time there are fewer funds available to fix it. and, so, this process is happening throughout the country and in san francisco. as you know, many public housing developments are being demolished and replaced with
new housing. as you heard very powerfully from? some tenants, these communities are very strong communities. there are community bonds that develop over a long period of time and it is incredibly destructive when residents are forced to spread out over the city and even leave the city when the public housing is demolished. and the federal and state law, although they provide relocation benefits, do not provide a right to return. and, so, what often happens is tenants are given vouchers and told to go and find some housing. and because of the current rental market being so tight and so expensive, those vouchers really just don't get you housing in san francisco at all. so, these residents are forced to relocate out of the city and build entirely new lives. so, what this amendment would do would protect their rights to come back to their communities and retain those community bonds and that is a tremendously important thing. i also wanted to echo some of what sister stephanie was saying about the gentrification issue. 35% of people in san francisco
subsidized housing are african-american so, this is a tremendously important issue for preserving the african-american population in san francisco. and as we're all aware, that is a huge problem and it's a community that is shrinking every single year. so, this amendment would also go a long way towards preserving that community. so, i wanted to highlight that issue. so, and again, the screening part of the amendment is tremendously important because it's sort of an empty right that you have a right to return, but when they come back to the new housing suddenly they have to pay a new security deposit or suddenly there is a really tough credit check. so, that is an important part of this as well. thank you. >> i have one more speaker card. i read the name ace on the case. thank you very much. it was something i woke up one morning, its was sent from heaven after ace in the place. but let me go on and say i am happy not pink but black today, that a new movement, not a
racial remark -- let me introduce myself. i am ace washington and i am the self-proclaimed czar of the african-american migration report institutionalized by newsome, the unfinished agenda. ladies and gentlemen, let me fast forward to where we're at now. now we are in a state of emergency in the african-american community. who houses most of our african-american community? the subsidized housing authority. i am elated, i'm excited that we have an ability to work on these tenants who have been removed or planning to be removed because that is the last draw of the african-american community. you know, this city has become something of the rich and the poor and it were to continue on the next 10 years. if you did a study, not on the past, but a projectory of the next 10 years and had the african-american study, you would see in one, three, five years we are near existent, we
won't be around for all these 50% hiring and all these housing. it's a game that has been played before you guys took your seat. myself truly, without staff, but with the help of god, i've been studying city government for the last 20 years. i was here back when david gilmore -- i helped brought tenants down here 20 years ago to city hall, y'all. i'm trying to tell y'all, i done been here. and what i saw might be against the law. and what i heard it sound so absurd. but ladies and gentlemen i'm here to tell you today there is a new structure, there is a new era, there is a new beginning, what i call community reform with legislation by the supervisors from my district, the most aggressive christina olague, we have -- do you know she hit a home run today? we had three committee meeting. toyed rush upstairs, run downstairs. i have never seen someone work as hard as she has in the time that she -- this is not a spot for her.
i'm just telling you like it t-i-s. if she wasn't doing it i'd be telling you she wasn't. i am happy and elated to speak on behalf of the fifth district and the supervisor. the housing authority, yes, there are big problems just like the redevelopment agency. not saying i'm pointing the finger at them. i think the they have to sit down with the table with all of us. particularly the african-american community. and with that i would say this. i have not only here advocating in this department. they're in all the departments that must adhere to the african-american migration. my name is ace, and i'm on this case and i don't need no permission from ed lee because he knows me. we used to work together when he was with the hrc. and if you ask ed lee, he would say ace is working on a conspiracy. one thing for sure, ladies and gentlemen, without a doubt, i think god is coming to help our people at the very end [speaker not understood]. >> thank you. i'm sarah short and here's
my report. [laughter] i had to think really hard about that one. this is the second time i went after ace, hard act to follow. so, i'm the director of the housing rights committee of san francisco, and we work with public housing residents. and unfortunately we've seen the fallout of the hope 6 redevelopment projects. we've had tenants come into our offices who weren't able to get back into their units for a variety of reasons. some sort of fell through the crackses because the process was so complicate and had lengthy. some were screened out in that they didn't meet the eligibility guidelines when the new buildings were renovated and, you know, or had bad credit records,ings? things like that. and some simply lost out because we at that time were not building one for one replacement unit. so, not everybody could come back. now, we think this hope sf model is a far better approach
to this and we know that the mayor's office and the housing authority and the community in general have made a strong commitment to one for one replacement. and we believe that this legislation really simply codifies a lot of the principles that came out of the hope sf task force and that have been touted by both the mayor's office and the housing authority in terms of the relocation rights and rights to return. what this does is adds a really critical additional piece beyond the relocation rights that are in the federal law, which is the right to appeal and sets up an actual local mechanism and a procedure for doing that. so, in the past, although hud regulations may say one thing about your right to return to the unit. if that right is violated, you had to do a lawsuit and that was like your only recourse.
and i think this city understands that asking tenants to have to go through all that is actually, you know, not very just in this circumstance. and i think that there's also an interest in kind of making up for the sins of the past and realizing i think a lot of people look back now and realize it didn't happen in the best way with hope at 6. so, let's anticipate the problems now that we could possibly expect and protect against them. and one of those big things is this right to appeal, to be able to go to the rent board and grieves when you believe your relocation rights have been violated. so, we really thank supervisor olague for putting this together and we hope to see your support for this measure. thank you very much. >> is there any additional public comment? okay, seeing none, the public comment portion of this comment is closed. commissioner antonini. >> i have some questions for
either olson lee or the director from public housing who is here. want to come up and just answer some of my questions. people may have not wanted to come back to the place they lived before and found another place to live that they prefer. they did not choose to come back. could you comment on that? >> well, i really wanted to thank the commission for the opportunity to explain a little bit about hope sf because it's very -- it's one of those only in san francisco programs because the goal of hope sf was to really avoid some of the problems that not only san francisco, but the nation had with the hope 6 process. and i think it's really clear that there was not, you know -- there really wasn't sort of the intention to really have the tenants tracked and returned to the original site, you know.
the rules of the hope 6 program were the uniform relocation act, people were provided the appropriate assistance under the uniform relocation act. but that wasn't necessarily sort of coupled with an intention, a principle of hope sf, which is the right to return, and the one for one replacement. so, many cities around the country, their idea of hope 6 was we're just going to demolish the dilapidated public housing, we're going to provide vouchers for everybody and do something else with the site. we're not going to do that here in san francisco. this is a principle. the right to return is a principle of hope sf and it's a principle we strongly support and that we intend to implement throughout the balance of our hope sf project. people -- so, going back to the original question about what was the return rate and why did people not return?
i was not involved with some of the earlier hope 6's, but part of it is people were provided relocation assistance and that's where it ended. there was no attempt to maintain contact with people who were relocated off-site. and because -- in some instances, the time it took to do the new construction was extensive, that people decided not to come back. obviously there are people who chose to go off to other areas because perhaps for family reasons or other reasons. but part of the loss of though individuals was perhaps the fact that we did not keep in contact with them. so, what are we doing that's different in hunters field? we're doing on-site replacement. that has some of the pluses and minuses -- one, you're not being relocated off-site, but you are in a construction zone. you're adjacent to the construction, but we are not losing you.
so, in that process we're able to sort of keep track of all the existing residents and have them basically move from one site to the other. and i hope that all the commissioners will be there when we celebrate the grand opening of our first phase in hunters view, which will hopefully -- the residents will begin moving in in november. but when we have the grand opening, there's multiple phases. but we hope you will be there because it will be an example of how this right to return has successfully worked and how we have worked with the residents to ensure that they are afforded the opportunity of this wonderful new housing within their own community. but in terms of, like i said, in terms of the other -- the past examples, again, perhaps it was -- perhaps the issue was not a priority in terms of
keeping in touch or, you know, that the time for the new construction to occur just allowed people to sort of reestablish themselves wherein by the time the opportunity came, they didn't want to come back. so, we are doing many of the things that the residents spoke of where in terms of the right to return, we're not creating new barriers for residents. if they're not being evicted by the housing authority, they are indeed coming back. and we're working very hard with the service component at hope sf to ensure that as they move from public housing to this rebuilt housing that they're going to be successful. and that really is a measure of how successful the whole hope sf initiative will be. >> a couple of follow-up questions. in all of the hope sf projects, mixed income developments which includes the public house being some other affordable housing,
some market rate housing. that's a big improvement for the community. >> that is correct. we're a little challenged right now with the market rate side. the first phase has both public housing and tax credit units and we're looking at how to -- at what point we would provide with the market rate component on those sites. all the hope sf sites are being planned in that way so there are mixed income communities. >> the only other question i had was i know the mayor's office is at this point -- the position is the recommendation from staff. i assume the mayor -- no action at this time. >> right. >> basically, i think from talking, hearing what you have to say, it's being worked out as part of hope sf and therefore this legislation may need a little more tuning before you enact it. is that correct? >> as dominica stated earlier, we work with the supervisor's office on an earlier version
and we made some suggestions to it. again, there's no question about the principle of right to return. >> and there is no jurisdictional problem with the federal government on hope 6 projects? because it's their projects more than ours. >> well, the way the federal laws are -- and the federal regulations, they always trump local. this is the right to return consistent with all the federal requirements. >> okay, thank you. did you want to add something? >> thank you. i'm from the housing authority. i may not be as available as my colleague. i want to simplify this. in the hope 6 process, san francisco is light years ahead of what that process was when we started it back in the early -- late '70s, early '80s. the fundamental premise of hope sf is we're replacing every housing unit one for one. in hope 6 that was never done
and never its intention. typically there were less units so that complicated your right to return. here in san francisco, as is the san francisco way, we're going to make a unit available forv every unit that exists today. so, that keeps us allowing folks to return to a unit. the other thing that makes this particular legislation make tremendous sense is it clarifies the elements that you have the exclusive expressed right to return to the new housing. that is the thing our commission supported back in '09. that is the fundamental principle that our mayor, that the mayor's office, that our staff, our residents and other stakeholders support. so, in that sense this particular process of hope sf may be the only place in the country where we were doing it this way. i think it's the right way to do t. so, in that sense i think it clarifies -- i don't believe it will have any conflict with the current federal rules and i
don't think as we move towards any language that clearly expresses the intent of residents' right to return will in any way conflict with the current federal rules. >> thank you. >> commissioner borden. >> i'm very supportive. i think one of the speakers said it best. people who endured and lived in substandard housing for a very long period of time, it just is unconscionable to think they would not be able to return to the new nicer units. we know of situations, we heard about them a lot through other development projects, of the kinds of situations that people are living in. and for them to be moved because the situation is that bad and not be able to return to those better situations it just doesn't seem -- it's wrong. it's completely -- and it doesn't for me make sense because the whole point of public housing for the people are here that we're trying to protect that are part of the community, not to necessarily benefit people who haven't been here, right?
i mean, so, it just doesn't seem to make sense to have it any other way. i'm very supportive of this legislatev asian. i don't see why there would be any reason to not be supportive of the legislation. in the san francisco spirit and intent, i wish other jurisdictions would follow and dot same thing. i think this is the only way to carry out this sort of relocation of people. and i just think that it's unfortunate that we had housing projects get to the point that they are in now that we have such disrepair. speaking of which, i know we have some projects that are coming on board. are there any ones -- do you know if there are underway any additional projects in the pipeline we should be aware of? >> so, hunters view is under construction. and, so, this commission approved an sud for hunters view. we're going to complete the first phase. we're sort of arranging the
financing and planning the second phase. alice griffith, this is a project that received a cni -- comprehensive neighborhood initiative to grant. and this grant was $30 million from hud to do basically hope sf. and that really was a jump start for that particular development. and what is coming to the commission is what will be the first phase of the alice griffith reid bill and that hopefully will be in the nearest future which will be 5800 senior. so, there is an off-site component, strictly voluntary, which will create independent senior housing at 5800, which is behind the condos and the whole foods. and hopefully a state-of-the-art senior center named obviously for dr. george
davis. so, that will be the first phase of the alice griffin reid bill and we're working with the developer and the developer's architect of the plan, the actual alice griffith site itself. and then for sunnydale and potrero, they both have applicationses for the cni planning grant right now which hopefully if they're awarded that planning grant from hud will be a precursor for additional implementation grant like alice griffith received. so, there's four projects that are progressing down the pike at this point. >> and have all the people been relocated from, say, hunters view and alice griffith yet? >> no. >> okay. >> hunters view was not fully occupied. there are portions of the site that were cleared and the remaining residents were moved to the balance of the site. so, we didn't have to relocate
anybody off-site. people were relocated off-site, its was voluntary. we have not done any relocation at alice yet. and, again, we will not have to do as much relocation at alice if there are additional vacant parcels that the city acquired and the developer acquired from the state park that are adjacent to alice griffith. so, that's where the first buildings will go. and as we build those buildings and move the residents from their existing units, we'll demolish those units. we are again trying to mime eyes the off sit relocation. >> it's good to know that. >> we can do that where we have room. we can't always do that, but hunters view and alice griffith give us the opportunity to do so. and, you know, obviously the dense ithv of potrero as well
as sunnydale is lower so we have the opportunity to keep most of the residents on-site as we build. * density the big question is the source of the funding. we will move as fast as we have funds to build. and, you know, so, that's always the biggest issue. but for now alice and hunters view are moving along. >> and then i guess the current location, it's sounds like those projects are okay. do we relocate them in county or do people have a choice -- do we try to find them housing within san francisco? how does that work? >> i can't speak for the past in terms of the other -- because the city has done hope 6 projects in the past. and i think that what the developers did was to offer the vouchers because those were completely demolished and they